Le cul entre les deux chaises

An American Spaniard in France or: How I Learned to Make an Ass of Myself in Three Cultures

A dash of Catalan in your diet


A classic Catalan-looking guy

I finally caught up with the documentary about Ferran Adrià and his famous (now closed) restaurant El Bulli. The doc, called “El Bulli: Cooking in Progress,” was produced by a German company and has English subtitles, not all of which were correct.

One of the best things about the film for me was that people were speaking mostly in Catalan, which I totally miss. I still use some Catalan words every day, especially when making out my grocery list, since many of their food words are just better (my opinion). There are also a lot of really good phrases in Catalan that I use all the time, but the doc reminded me of so many great words that I need to reincorporate into my daily vocabulary.

Here’s a selection that you could add to your repertoire:

  • Que canto [keh kahn two] : “what do I sing?” Use: “what do I say?” or “what do I call it?”
  • Em sembla [em semblah] : “it appears/looks like.” Use: “I think” (opinion).
  • Agafar [ah-gah-far] : v. “to grab” or “take hold.” Excellent in the imperative, “agafa!

Great Catalan food words that I use all the time:

  • carxofa [kahr-cho-fah] : artichoke
  • pastanaga [pasta-nah-gah] : carrot
  • enciam [n-see-am] : lettuce
  • llet [yet] : milk
  • pollastre [poh-yas-tra] : chicken
  • formatge [for-mat-dza]: cheese
  • maduixe [mah-doo-sha] : strawberry

Get cooking with some Catalan!


Author: le cul en rows

I'm an American Spaniard, living in France. I like to tell stories.

2 thoughts on “A dash of Catalan in your diet

  1. Ah! I can’t wait to see this! Where did you watch it?

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